Saturday, April 1, 2023
HomeRelationship AdviceMy wife (31F) asked me (34M) to choose between my mom (55F)...

My wife (31F) asked me (34M) to choose between my mom (55F) and her and I think I am going to divorce her.

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A little background: my mum and dad were both orphans, my dad died two weeks before I was born, my mum didn’t really have a support system, so we were just the two of us. I never lacked anything because my mother worked all her life to give me the life I have today and didn’t even have time for herself to start a new life again. She did all the little jobs possible so that we didn’t miss anything. She deprived herself of food to give me food, I had very good clothes while she had none. I saw her make sacrifices again and again and always with a smile, frankly I always thought she was an angel dressed in a human body. The only time she yelled at me was when I was 16 when I saw her getting sick and working at the same time.

I wanted to help her by finding a job, but she was angry and told me it was not my job to take care of her and it was up to her to take care of me, she wanted me to get really good grades to get into the best universities it’s the only way I can protect myself when she can’t anymore. Even at university she didn’t want me to work, I had to be focused on my studies, but she wanted me to volunteer “so that I could be an adult who could do something with his hands”.

I met my wife there while both of us were volunteered. My wife is a good person, but she was never close to her parents or her siblings. Yet she adored my mother since she met her, there were times when I thought she loved my mother more than she loved me and we laughed about it, deep down, I think she was looking for the bond between mother and daughter that she did not have from her mother.

When I finished my studies, I found a job, we move in together, but she wasn’t confortable that I call my mom everyday (remind you those were 10 – 15 minutes call) but eventually she stop bring It on. Two years later I bought a house for my mother, because we never had a house in our name, we lived from apartment to apartment, so for all the sacrifices she made it was for me the least of it and it was non-negotiable, that’s where the problems started with my wife (then GF). She wanted me to think about us first, I told her my dream had always been to buy my mom a house since I was little and that’s what I had to do. But she complained about It to my mom. My mom didn’t even knew I bought a house for her as It was suppose to be a surprise for her birthday. she was unconfortable of receiving the house because of my wife and told me that wasn’t necessary that we could use It for us when we get married. I was furious, I told my mother that the house was for her that she could do with it whatever she wanted but it was time for her to think about herself first.

Our couple survived that, we got married and then we had our own house. Our life was going well until two months ago when my mother fell ill, I wanted her to come and live with us so that I could take care of her, but my wife didn’t want to, I then decided to rent an apartment with my own money right next to our house so that I could be close to her and go there to take care of her. But even that idea didn’t sit well with my wife. Me and my wife don’t have children yet, we both work, I usually come home at 6 p.m., but since my mother is sick, I go to see her and come home at 8 p.m. On weekends I see her for 1 or 2 hours and the rest of the time I spend It with my wife. We go on date, I always accompany her in her hobbies even though she never went to mine. Two days ago she told me that she thought about it and she thinks I prioritize my mother too much. She told me that I had to choose between my mother and the life I want to build with her.

The truth is that I never made her feel that way. We both work but I’m the one who cooks, and I pay a person to do the housework. I make sure I do the dishes she likes, she didn’t even know what I like to eat because I never complain. I run her baths, give her massages, flowers, I write her poems that I hide somewhere in the house for her to find out, we go on a trip one weekend a month, I earn much more money than her, I told her to keep her money for herself and I take care of all the bills even hers, I always make sure to listen to her and consider her opinion, and I think I am easy going because I can change my mind to accommodate hers, but I realize that she tries to completely dominate me and the only subject where I don’t give her a choice is my relationship with my mother . So there I’m going to have a talk with her and put some very clear bounderies, if she doesn’t want to, well, we’re going to divorce.

Just want It out of my chest

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  1. I’m sorry that your mother isn’t doing well.

    I (44F) feel like I can relate to this situation from both sides.

    Your wife is resource guarding. She doesn’t like that your money that could be “her” money is getting spent on your mother. Your money is one resource. And she also doesn’t like you spending so much time with your mother. Your time is another resource.

    To me, ultimatums are manipulative at best and abusive at worst. If she doesn’t like the situation, she has a choice and SHE can leave if she wants to be black and white about it.

    That said, you have a partner. As much as you care about your mom, you are making a lot of unilateral decisions to benefit your mom without much/any consideration for your wife.

    It’s not sustainable in a healthy way for you to be at your mom’s every night for hours. If she needs care, then perhaps hiring some in home health care resources a few days a week at least would be wise.

    Beyond it taking a toll on your marriage for you to be over there daily, you’re not a trained caregiver and depending on what your mom’s needs are, a professional might be best for help with bathing, toileting, cleaning, and cooking. Also, you’re at risk for caregiver burnout because you have very little time to yourself and are being pulled in different directions.

    I have dropped everything to care for a family member and left my husband cross country for a few months to do so. But I’m also a trained provider AND it was a short term situation until we could get care organized.

    I do feel like I understand your situation. But I can also appreciate why your wife feels like she does. I think she’s being rather shit about how she’s handling it but her concerns seem valid to me as well.

    Perhaps a couples counselor could help. But at the end of the day, when someone gives me an ultimatum, I call their bluff. I won’t be bullied like that. I think you could find a compromise but it’s NOT choosing one or the other person and the fact that your wife thinks that’s a reasonable ask makes me question her humanity.

  2. I mean, it sounds like you’re continually making big life decisions without consulting her. You’re in a partnership–you can’t act like single person anymore.

    Also, you can’t decide for someone else that you’ve never made them feel not prioritized. That’s really dismissive. And if you keep making those big decisions alone, she will keep feeling that way. What you could try is sitting down for a conversation where you share what your goals are for your mother and her care, and see if the two of you can come to an agreement on how this could be handled in such a way that your relationships with both your mother and your wife are both respected. It sounds like you dominate your wife on these big decisions, honestly.

  3. Me parece que su esposa está actuando como chiquilina, según se desprende de su publicación, op es el único familiar de su madre, considerando que su madre hizo un gran sacrificio para que op esté donde está, me parece perfecto que quiera devolverle el favor haciéndose cargo de su cuidado. Notese que no la llevó a vivir a su casa sino al lado, 2 hs por día parecen razonables para saber si necesita algo y acompañarla. Si hay que elegir entre mamá (que al principio era adorada por su esposa) y su esposa (que debería acompañar al marido en las buenas y en las malas), está bien que elija a su mamá. Ya aparecerá lapersona que esté dispuesta a estar a su lado EN LAS BUENAS Y EN LAS MALAS. Le mando un abrazo grande y mucha fuerza!

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